Breast cancer that spreads to other organs is extremely difficult to treat. Doctors can buy patients time, but a cure remains elusive. Now, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown that human breast tumors transplanted into mice are excellent models of metastatic cancer and could be valuable tools in the search for better treatments.
According to new research published in the September 19, 2013 edition of Cell Reports, these transplanted tumors maintain the genetic errors that caused the original cancer, even though they are growing in mice. As such, mice carrying human tumors can help identify drivers of tumor growth and serve as excellent test subjects for investigating new drugs.
Shown in this photo are human breast cancer cells (red) growing amid mouse cells (green).
Photo Courtesy: Matthew J. Ellis, M.D., Ph.D.
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